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About Sailor Moon

Please note that Japanese names are provided in their traditional order, i.e. family name (surname) followed by given name.

General information

General information
  • Original Japanese title: 美少女戦士セーラームーン Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn
  • Original English translation: Pretty Soldier/Guardian Sailor Moon
  • Short Japanese title: セーラームーン Sērā Mūn
  • Short English title: Sailor Moon
  • Original creator: 武内直子 Takeuchi Naoko
  • Demographic: 少女 shōjo
  • Genre: 魔法少女 mahō shōjo, 戦隊 sentai

“Pretty Soldier/Guardian Sailor Moon” [Japanese: 『美少女戦士セーラームーン』 “Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn”] or more commonly known simply as “Sailor Moon” [Japanese: セーラームーン “Sērā Mūn”] is a popular Japanese manga franchise, and one of the most iconic series of the magical girl [Japanese: 魔法少女 mahō shōjo] genre. It was created by 武内直子 Takeuchi Naoko. As the manga series has grown very popular, it has spawned a variety of releases in other media — TV anime series, anime movies, musicals series, live-action series, as well as games. Its newest installment — Web anime series launched in 2014 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the series.

Manga information

Manga information
  • Author: 武内直子 Takeuchi Naoko
  • Japanese publisher: 講談社 Kōdansha
  • English publisher: Tokyopop
  • Japanese magazine: 『なかよし』 “Nakayoshi”
  • English magazine: “Mixxzine”, “Smile”
  • Original run: February 1992 – March 1997
  • Volume count: 18 (original edition) or 12 (renewed edition)
  • Chapter count: 52 (original edition) or 59 (renewed edition) + side stories
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーン原作漫画
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn gensaku manga
  • Pretty Soldier/Guardian Sailor Moon original manga

Whole manga story is divided into 5 main story arcs [Japanese: 本編 honpen]:

  1. Dark Kingdom arc [Japanese: ダーク・キングダム編 Dāku Kingudamu hen] spans from Act 1 to Act 13 (1–14 in reprint and complete editions). Note that this is not the official, but fan-made name of this story arc, as it was not given any specific names (unlike other 4). It roughly corresponds to first anime season and whole live action series.
  2. Black Moon arc [Japanese: ブラック・ムーン編 Burakku Mūn hen] spans from Act 14 to Act 23 (15–26 in reprint and complete editions). It roughly corresponds to second anime season.
  3. Infinity arc [Japanese: 無限編 Mugen hen] spans from Act 24 to Act 33 (27–38 in reprint and complete editions). This is the first story arc which has its name constantly appearing as a præfix in chapter titles. It roughly corresponds to third anime season.
  4. Dream arc [Japanese: 夢編 Yume hen] spans from Act 34 to Act 42 (39–49 in reprint and complete editions). It roughly corresponds to fourth anime season as well as first part of the fifth season.
  5. Stars arc [Japanese: スターズ編 Sutāzu hen] spans from Act 43 to Act 52 (50–60 in reprint and complete editions). It roughly corresponds to second part of the fifth season.

In addition to these main story arcs we are provided with so-called side stories [Japanese: 番外編 bangaipen], also known as short stories [Japanese: 短編 tanpen]. They are as follows:

  1. Lover of Princess Kaguya [Japanese: かぐや姫の恋人 Kaguya-hime no koibito],
  2. Casablanca Memory [Japanese: ブラック・ムーン編 Kasaburanka memorī],
  3. Exam Battles [Japanese: 受験戦争編 Juken sensō hen],
  4. Chibi-Usa’s Picture Diary [Japanese: ちびうさ絵日記 Chibi-Usa enikki].

New anime (Web & TV series) information

New anime (Web & TV series) information
  • Series director: 境宗久 Sakai Munehisa [seasons I–II]; 今千秋 Kon Chiaki [season III]
  • Scriptwriters: 小林雄次 Kobayashi Yūji, 伊藤睦美 Itō Mutsumi
  • Character designer: 佐光幸恵 Sakō Yukie [seasons I–II]; 高橋晃 Takahashi Akira [season III]
  • Music composer: 高梨康治 Takanashi Yasuharu
  • Production: 講談社 Kōdansha, 東映アニメーション Tōei Animēshon
  • Episode count: 14 [season I], 12 [season II], 13 [season III]
  • Original run: July 5, 2014 – … (ongoing)
  • Broadcast: ニコニコ生放送 Niko-Niko Nama Hassō (Nico-Nico Live Broadcast), ニコニコチャンネル Niko-Niko Channeru (Nico-Nico Channel), バンダイチャンネル Bandai Channeru (Bandai Channel), Neon Alley, Hulu, Crunchyroll [seasons I–II]; 東京メトロポリタンテレビジョン Tōkyō Metoroporitan Terebijon (Tokyo MX), サンテレビ San Terebi (Sun TV), TVQ九州放送 TVQ Kyūshū Hassō (TVQ Kyūshū Broadcasting), テレビ北海道 Terebi Hokkaidō (TV Hokkaidō), テレビ愛知 Terebi Aichi (TV Aichi), BS11 [season III]
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーンCrystal(クリスタル)・WEB&テレビアニメ
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn Crystal (Kurisutaru) WEB & terebi anime
  • Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal Web & TV anime

Unlike the older anime series, this anime follows the plot of the original manga almost to the letter with few minor exceptions. It was produced in commemoration of the original series’ 20th anniversary. The original net animation covers the first two manga story arcs. A third season is currently being broadcast on TV and follows the third manga arc.

  1. Dark Kingdom arc [Japanese: ダーク・キングダム編 Dāku Kingudamu hen] spans from Act 1 to Act 14. It corresponds to the first manga arc.
  2. Black Moon arc [Japanese: ブラック・ムーン編 Burakku Mūn hen] spans from Act 14 to Act 26. It corresponds to the second manga arc.
  3. Death Busters arc [Japanese: デス・バスターズ編 Desu Basutāzu hen] spans from Act 27 to Act 33. It corresponds to the third manga arc.

For comprehensive Web anime episode listing please refer to Episode guide.

Old anime (TV series) information

Old anime (TV series) information
  • Directors: 佐藤順一 Satō Jun’ichi, 幾原邦彦 Ikuhara Kunihiko, 五十嵐卓哉 Igarashi Takuya
  • Scriptwriters: 富田祐弘 Tomita Sukehiro, 榎戸洋司 Enokido Yōji, 山口亮太 Yamaguchi Ryōta, 杉原めぐみ Sugihara Megumi
  • Character designers: 只野和子 Tadano Kazuko, 伊藤郁子 Itō Ikuko, 爲我井克美 Tamegai Katsumi
  • Music composers: 有澤孝紀 Arisawa Takanori, 小室哲哉 Komuro Tetsuya, さとうかずお Satō Kazuo
  • Production: テレビ朝日 Terebi Asahi, 東映動画 Tōei Dōga (東映アニメーション Tōei Animēshon)
  • English dubbing: DiC Entertainment, Cloverway, Inc.
  • Episode count: 200 (normal) + 1 (special)
  • Original run: March 7, 1992 – February 8, 1997
  • Broadcast (Japan): テレビ朝日 Terebi Asahi
  • Broadcast (USA): USA Network, Cartoon Network, Syndication, NBC
  • Broadcast (UK): Fox Kids, ITV
  • Broadcast (Canada): YTV, Global
  • Broadcast (Australia): ABC, 7, Ten, Fox Kids Australia
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーン・テレビアニメ
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn terebi anime
  • Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon TV anime

Similarly to manga anime story is divided into 5 seasons:

  1. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon [Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーン Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn] spans from episode 1 to episode 46. It originally run on TV Asahi from 7th of March 1992 to 27th of February 1993. Unlike other 4 seasons it has not been given any specific name. Thus, in order to distinguish it from the whole anime continuity it has been dubbed Classic by fans. Japanese fans may attach a word 無印 mujirushi which simply means ‘unlabeled’. This season name may be simplified to: SM Classic, Classic, SM C, C. It roughly corresponds to first manga story arc and whole live action series.
  2. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon R [Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーンR Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn Āru] spans from episode 47 to episode 89. It originally run on TV Asahi from 6th of March 1993 to 12th of March 1994. According to the booklet attached to “Memorial Song Box” album, letter “R” can mean both Return and Romance. This season name may be simplified to: SM Return/Romance, Return/Romance, SM R, R. It roughly corresponds to second manga story arc.
  3. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon S [Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーンS Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn Sūpā] spans from episode 90 to episode 127. It originally run on TV Asahi from 19th of March 1994 to 25th of February 1995. The letter “S” stands for Super, and is pronounced as such in eyecatches. This season name may be simplified to: SM Super, Super, SM S, S. It roughly corresponds to third manga story arc.
  4. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon SuperS [Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーンSuperS SuperS Bishōjo Senshi Sērāmūn Sūpāzu] spans from episode 128 to episode 166 (+ special 3-part episode). It originally run on TV Asahi from 4th of March 1995 to 2nd of February 1996. The word SuperS is pronounced in eyecatches as [súːpāzŭ] which may suggest that letter “S” is a plural marker (despite it being grammatically incorrect). This season name may be simplified to: SM SuperS, SuperS, SM SS, SS. It roughly corresponds to almost entire fourth manga story arc.
  5. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon Sailor Stars [Japanese: 美少女戦士セーラームーンセーラースターズ Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn Sērā Sutāzu] spans from episode 167 to episode 200. It originally run on TV Asahi from 9th of March 1996 to 8th of February 1997. The word SuperS is pronounced in eyecatches as [súːpāzŭ] which may suggest that letter “S” is a plural marker (despite it being grammatically incorrect). This season name may be simplified to: SM Sailor Stars, Sailor Stars, SM Stars, Stars. It roughly corresponds to fourth and fifth manga story arcs.

For comprehensive TV anime episode listing please refer to Episode guide.

Old anime (movies) information

Old anime (movies) information
  • Directors: 幾原邦彦 Ikuhara Kunihiko (R), 小坂春女 Kosaka Harume (R+), 芝田浩樹 Shibata Hiroki (S, SS), 五十嵐卓哉 Igarashi Takuya (SS+)
  • Scriptwriters: 武内直子 Takeuchi Naoko (all), 富田祐弘 Tomita Sukehiro (R, R+, S), 榎戸洋司 Enokido Yōji (SS), 山口亮太 Yamaguchi Ryōta (SS+)
  • Character designers: 只野和子 Tadano Kazuko (R, R+), 香川久 Kagawa Hisashi (S, SS, SS+)
  • Music composer: 有澤孝紀 Arisawa Takanori
  • Cinematography: 高橋基 Takahashi Motoi (R, R+, SS), 武田純一 Takeda Jun’ichi (SS+)
  • Editor: 吉川泰弘 Yoshikawa Yasuhiro
  • Distributor: 東映 Tōei
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーン劇場版アニメ
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn gekijōban anime
  • Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon theatrical anime

In addition to TV anime three full-length movies have been released. They are, however, chronologically difficult if impossible to place into the main plot continuity. There are two more movies which are often called special episodes in fandom. Since they have been shown together with the first and the third movie in cinemas, they ought to be classified not as special episodes, but as short-length movies.

Movie list
Original Japanese version English dub
Nr. Title Air date Nr. Title Air date
  • 劇場版美少女戦士セーラームーンR
  • Gekijōban Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn R
  • Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon R: The Movie
5 XII 1993 mov Sailor Moon R the Movie: Promise of the Rose 8 II 2000
  • メイクアツプ!セ一ラ一戦士!
  • Meiku-appu! Sērā Senshi!
  • Make-up! Sailor Soldiers!
5 XII 1993 n/a
  • 劇場版美少女戦士セーラームーンS
  • Gekijōban Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn S
    ~ Kaguya-hime no Koibito
  • Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon S: The Movie
    ~ The Lover of Princess Kaguya
4 XII 1994 mov Sailor Moon S the Movie: Hearts in Ice 23 V 2000
  • 劇場版美少女戦士セーラームーンSuperS
  • Gekijōban Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn SuperS
    ~ Sērā 9 Senshi Shūketsu! Burakku Dorīmu Hōru no Kiseki
  • Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon SuperS: The Movie
    ~ The 9 Sailor Soldiers get together! Miracle at the Black Dream Hole
23 XII 1995 mov Sailor Moon Super S the Movie: Black Dream Hole 13 IX 2000
  • スペシャルプレゼント 亜美ちゃんの初恋
  • Supesharu Purezento Ami-chan no hatsukoi
    Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn SuperS Gaiden
  • Special Present: Ami’s First Love
    Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon SuperS Side Story
23 XII 1995 n/a

Stage musical information

Stage musical information
  • Directors: 野伏翔 Nobushi Jō, 平光琢也 Hiramitsu Takuya &c.
  • Music composer: 小坂明子 Kosaka Akiko
  • Production: 東映 Tōei, バンダイミュージカルオフィス Bandai Myūjikaru Ofisu
  • Original run: Summer 1993 – Winter 2005; Fall 2013 – … (ongoing)
  • Musical show count: 29; 2
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーン・ミュージカル
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn myūjikaru
  • Pretty Soldier/Guardian Sailor Moon musical

Live action series information

Live action series information
  • Directors: 田﨑竜太 Tasaki Ryūta, 高丸雅隆 Takamaru Masataka, 舞原賢三 Maihara Kenzō &c.
  • Music composer: 大島ミチル Ōshima Michiru
  • Production: 東映 Tōei, バンダイビジュアル Bandai Bijuaru
  • Original run: October 4, 2003 – September 25, 2004
  • Episode count: 49 (normal) + 2 (direct-to-video special: prequel + sequel)
  • Broadcast: CBC, TBS
  • 美少女戦士セーラームーン・テレビ実写版ドラマ
  • Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn terebi jisshaban dorama
  • Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon TV live action drama

Plot synopsis

The following section contains spoilers and many plot references. You have been warned!

Naoko Takeuchi has blended many seemingly different themes during the creation of “Sailor Moon”. She was able to combine her interest in astrology, mineralogy and Classical mythology with Japanese sailor-style school uniforms [Japanese: セーラー服 sērā-fuku], thus creating a completely new and original concept.

“Sailor Moon” has become the longest series of the magical girls [Japanese: 魔法少女 mahō shōjo] genre, and is virtually responsible for popularising the concept of a team [Japanese: 戦隊 sentai] endowed with magical abilities. While many other productions followed a similar pattern, most of them are generally deemed relatively uninspired, and had never amassed such popularity. Because of numerous adaptations in different countries “Sailor Moon” may be called one of the most popular manga & anime series in the world. Originally intended mainly for teenage girls though, it attracted many male viewers as well. Its great and interesting plot & unique humour appeals to many people, both the younger and the older. Today “Sailor Moon” may be easily considered as a classic exam of Japanese animation.

The story revolves around girls who are Sailor Soldiers [Japanese: セーラー戦士 Sērā Senshi] — the ancient Solar System planet guardians who have been reincarnated on Earth. Their task as Soldiers is to fight malevolent beings that threaten peaceful life on this planet. In the meantime, the story also tells us how they deal with their daily life as ordinary teenage girls, with particular emphasis on friendship, love interests, and entrance examinations.

One day a fourteen-year girl named Usagi Tsukino meets black talking cat named Luna. She tells that Dark Kingdom has awaken from its seemingly eternal damnation and is once more attempting to engulf world in darkness. Then she gives Usagi a magical brooch which transforms her into Sailor Moon — one of the legendary Sailor Soldiers who protect the Solar System from evil. Usagi is joined by other four awakened warriors — Ami Mizuno (Sailor Mercury), Rei Hino (Sailor Mars), Makoto Kino (Sailor Jupiter), and Minako Aino (Sailor Venus) (as well as one more advisor cat, Artemis). They form a team and become good friends. Apart from fighting Dark Kingdom, they are entrusted to find the Moon Princess and a powerful artifact known as Silver Crystal. Girls are always helped by mysterious Tuxedo Mask. His name is Mamoru Chiba, and he is introduced as a young man who takes pleasure to tease and annoy Usagi by commenting on her eating habits & poor grades. These two, however, gradually come to like each other. At the end of the first series it is revealed that the princess they are looking for is actually Usagi herself, and Mamoru is her beloved one — the Earth Prince.

They begin to recall the events of their past lives. We get to know that once upon a time there was Silver Millenium — an ancient civilisation on the Moon, ruled by Queen Serenity, the mother of Princess Serenity (Usagi), and protected by four Sailor Soldiers. It was, however, destroyed alongside with Golden Kingdom (the kingdom of Earth) by evil Dark Kingdom. Princess Serenity, Prince Endymion, four Sailor Soldiers, and Moon inhabitants are all killed in the aftermath. Queen Serenity sacrificed her life for them to be reborn on Earth in future.

As series progresses Usagi and her friends fight new stronger foes with the aid of more allies: Setsuna Meiō (Sailor Pluto), Haruka Ten’ō (Sailor Uranus), Michiru Kaiō (Sailor Neptune), Hotaru Tomoe (Sailor Saturn), Kō Seiya (Sailor Star Fighter), Kō Taiki (Sailor Star Maker), Kō Yaten (Sailor Star Healer), Princess Kakyū (Sailor Kakyū), and Chibi-Usa Tsukino (Sailor Chibi-Moon). The latter is in fact the daughter of Usagi and Mamoru, who arrived from the future together with her advisor cat, Diana, which in turn is the future daughter of Luna and Artemis.

Although many events & concepts do overlap in the manga, anime, musical and live-action series, there is plenty of notable differences. It is generally not a good idea use to information from one source to explain another one.

Written & compiled by 渾沌の天使 Konton no Tenshi. Adapted from: